Saraki Loses Bid To Stop CCT Trial As Senate Finally Amends Tribunal Act
The appeal court on Thursday dismissed Senate President Bukola Saraki’s appeal challenging his trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT).
The panel led by Abdul Aboki, a justice, dismissed the appeal and held that the appellant’s submission was laced with sentiments.
Aboki further struck out a cross appeal by the appellant filed at court, saying that it was “smuggle?d in”.
Saraki is standing trial for alleged false declaration of assets.
Meanwhile, the Senate o Thursday finally the Code of Conduct (amendment) bill, 2016.
Although, actual amendments to the Act were done by the house of representatives and passed on May 31, the senate concurred with the house and passed the bill on Thursday.
Early in the year, the upper legislative chamber? had sought to amend the Act, but a public outcry forced it to shelve it. Although, a similar bill has been reintroduced.
The senate passed 14 amendments to the Act.
It amended section 3 of the Act thus: “Upon complaint(s) of any breach or where it appears to the bureau that there is a breach of the provision or this Act, the person concerned shall be given particulars of such non compliance or breaches to explain before any reference to the tribunal.”
This implies that the CCB cannot immediately refer a matter to the CCT without giving a public officer a notice; one of the contentions of Saraki.
Section 1 (4) which was expunged, and replaced with “the chairman and members shall serve for a term of five years subject to renewal for one further term only”.
Section 4 (2) was amended to substitute the word “president” with “the national assembly” as the one to confer powers on the bureau and the tribunal.
The senate fixed the age of entry to the bureau at 50, and the number of members of the tribunal to sit in judgment on a case at three.